Huge restates commitment to student athletes as criticism mounts

0
477
Athletics Director Samantha Huge issued an email to students Friday, Oct. 2, after several weeks of criticism surrounding her decision to cut seven varsity sports after the 2020-21 year. COURTESY PHOTO / Tribe Athletics

Friday, Oct. 2, Athletics Director Samantha Huge addressed the future of Tribe Athletics in an email sent to College of William and Mary community members. The email comes after the College announced its discontinuation of seven varsity sports after the 2020-21 academic year, which sparked criticism among student athletes and Tribe Athletics fans.

“I have heard clearly the concerns expressed by members of our community regarding the future of W&M Athletics,” Huge said in the email. “I am writing to underscore my commitment to delivering on the goals that Rector Littel and President Rowe outlined last week, and to share an update on some next steps. I am particularly committed to the student-athletes, coaches and alumni of the seven affected programs.”

“I have heard clearly the concerns expressed by members of our community … I am writing to underscore my commitment to delivering on the goals that Rector Littel and President Rowe outlined last week.”

Huge highlighted that the student athletes are the most important individuals in this situation, and she announced that she will be meeting with the Student Athlete Advisory Committee representatives of the seven teams as early as next week.

Huge also announced that the Athletic Department will be pursuing various avenues in the next month in an attempt to reach out to disaffected student athletes. One approach includes the “Discussions with Tribe Club Executive Committee and Athletic Teams Representatives.” This organization is intended to allow a core group from each of the seven discontinued teams to communicate about finances. The second method is “Opportunities for Expanded Dialogue about Excellence in William and Mary Athletics.” The aim of this event includes receiving various viewpoints, sharing information and listening to these diverse opinions as a way to develop a path for the future. On the Tribe Athletics website, there is a page with opportunities to submit questions prior to the event.

“It will take our entire William & Mary community coming together to find innovative solutions to the issues we must resolve, and I look forward to the opportunity to work with each of you in the coming weeks,” Huge said in the email.